The Bank of Ghana (BoG) recently rolled out a policy to pump 20 million Dollars daily into the economy, a decision aimed at boosting and managing the Cedi, which was losing value against its major trading currencies.
Unfortunately over the years, we have tried this, anytime the currency is losing value, what we have always done is to arrest the demand, by supplying more forex into the system, which is a basic rule in economics.
This measure has not been helpful, since with time, we go back to where we started.
The solution, we all know and have discussed over the years, is to try and eat what we grow and wear what we produce.
We can only achieve this by putting restrictions on the importation of certain goods the nation has considerable comparative advantage in their production processes, because persuasion and a call to be patriotism has failed.
The restrictions will be in the best interest of the country’s economic growth and development.
Citing rice as an example, we can as a matter of deliberate policy, invest a lot of resources in the local production of these commodities and put some restrictions on it importation.
It will be difficult, at the initial stage, because Ghanaians have developed an appetite for foreign rice to the detriment of the emerging domestic rice industry.
We can decide to go the way of Nigeria, where it is now a policy that importers who insist on carrying on in the line of business of importing some commodities like, rice, private jets, textiles, tomato paste, poultry products and 35 other items, must have to source its foreign exchange component elsewhere.
We at The Herald cannot agree more with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), as it is the effective way of optimizing the nation’s forex management, as well as enhancing her foreign reserve.
We import simple things that we have the comparative advantage of producing, it is sad that even fruit juice, is imported from Saudi Arabia, whereas we have the abundance of fruits in the country, which is rotten away at the farm gates.
We all have a responsibility to ensure that, the Cedi remains strong, as it decline affects everything in the market. We should only import and buy essentials that we do not have the capacity to produce.